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1050 North Dodge Boulevard
Tucson, AZ 85716
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Jon Alfred RINNANDER Obituary
RINNANDER, Jon Alfred, was called to his Rest on Friday June 7, 2013. Born in Chicago on March 23, 1942 to a Swedish American mining engineer and a Missouri teacher of Scots Irish pre-revolutionary stock, Jon early on proved bookish, talkative, and sociable. Growing up in Philadelphia, he attended the distinguished Central High School (graduating in the 212th class), one of the first public schools field testing the AP program. His exemplary dignified teachers, mainly Jewish (as were some 98% of his classmates) inspired in him a lifelong love of learning, skill in intellectual disputation, and respect for excellence. He obtained one of the coveted Mayor's Scholarships to the University of Pennsylvania, where he graduated with Honors in Romance Languages and Phi Beta Kappa at age 19. He went on to Fulbright study at the University of Madrid (now the Complutense) and graduate fellowships at Princeton University. In summer study in Avignon, he learned from luminaries such as Victor Brombert and Rene Girard. His subsequent university teaching included Amherst College and the State University of New York at Old Westbury. In 1971 he began a lifelong association with the Episcopal Church and Episcopal Schools. Over the years he taught at Harvard School (Los Angeles) and an administrator at the Bishop's Schools (La Jolla, CA), Christ School (Arden, N.C.), and finally was headmaster of Christ Church School in Istanbul, a program for refugee children. Along the way he acquired a doctorate in European History at UCSD. From 1995 until his retirement he was an international school teacher, serving in Malaysia, Romania, Germany, Korea and Turkey. From his childhood, his passion was singing and listening to classical and choral music. He sang on occasion with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the San Diego symphony, the Kuala Lumpur symphony, and with independent choirs in Korea, Germany, and Turkey. In 2005 he took part in the Turkish premiere of Mozart's Mass in C minor. The performance, in the Byzantine Hagia Erine church, was telecast life on Turkish national television. In Tucson he has sung with the Tucson Masterworks Chorale. His intellectual and personal restlessness made him an adequate spouse and parent, but he was successful over the years in sustaining deep and productive friendships over decades. He was a dedicated church worker, serving in many leadership positions in Episcopal parishes and cathedrals around the world. In Tucson he has principally dedicated himself to the Episcopal Parish of St. Michael and All Angels, to the Tucson Interfaith HIV/Aids Network, and to Sat Bir Kuar Khalsa's Culture of Peace Alliance. In gratitude for the generosity and love he experienced abroad in Malaysia and Turkey, he was an enthusiastic supporter of the annual Tucson Jewish-Muslim walk as well as of the vital Community Conversations. He took courses in the Humanities Institute at the U. of A., attended concerts and recitals there, and fed his mind on lectures at the CMES. He is survived by his brother, Philip (Martha); son, Erik and the nieces, nephew, and great-nieces and great nephew in that line. He is also remembered by those whose education he sponsored in Malaysia and Turkey, at some sacrifice to his own financial stability. He also leaves in Tucson a godson, George Andrade and a loyal social partner and dear friend in Brett Christenson. Arrangements by ADAIR FUNERAL HOMES, Dodge Chapel.
Published in the Arizona Daily Star on June 12, 2013
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